DENVER — Center School District sits in the heart of the scenic, high-altitude San Luis Valley, in south-central Colorado. It’s a remote, rural, agricultural area with large tracts of land dedicated to cultivation of a variety of crops, including alfalfa, barley and carrots. But potatoes dominate the region. Large, open trucks filled to overflowing with potatoes are a common sight, lumbering along the valley’s narrow roads.
Center’s schools reflect the agricultural nature of the area, as well as the fact that the San Luis Valley (and all of southern Colorado) was part of Mexico until the mid-19th century. Just over one quarter of Center’s 648 preK-12th-grade students belong to migrant farmworker families, most of them from Mexico. This poses significant educational challenges, because students leave for extended periods of time as their parents follow work opportunities to Arizona and California during the winter months.
A large percentage of these students may also be undocumented, which creates additional challenges when it comes to financial aid for higher education.
For the complete article see the 03-09-2017 issue.
Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 03-09-2017 paper.